2015 | Week of October 26 | #1121
For the first time since its inception in 1997, the World Congress of Families is coming to the United States. Founded with the vision and energy of Dr. Allan Carlson, one of America’s most noted experts on the natural family, The World Congress of Families periodically gathers like-minded leaders and influencers together to stake a firm claim on the importance of the natural family, defined as the union of one man and one woman united in marriage and their biological or adopted children.
According to The World Congress of Families, is purpose is “to affirm that the natural human family is established by the Creator and essential to good society. We address ourselves to all people of good will who, with the majority of the world’s people, value the natural family. Ideologies of statism, individualism and sexual revolution, today challenge the family’s very legitimacy as an institution. Associated with this challenge are the problems of divorce, devaluation of parenting, declining family time, morally relativistic public education, confusions over sexual identity, promiscuity, sexually transmitted diseases, abortion, poverty, human trafficking, violence against women, child abuse, isolation of the elderly, excessive taxation and below-replacement fertility. To defend the family and to guide public policy and cultural norms, this Declaration asserts principles that respect and uphold the vital roles that the family plays in society.”
World Congress of Families IX kicks off this Tuesday and runs through this Friday in Salt Lake City, Utah. I’ve looked at the lineup of speakers, panelists, and breakout session leaders. They hail from numerous countries and have outstanding credentials. The topics for the week run from defending human life from conception to natural death to the advancing of policies to promote and protect the natural family unit in every society, from life in the United States after the Supreme Court’s redefinition of marriage to how to stop the demographic winter that is threatening so many societies. Organizers are saying 2500 people are expected to attend this 9th World Congress of Families.
This is not a religious gathering; there is no call to worship. But people from many different religious backgrounds will be attending and speaking—many of whom I will disagree with theologically. However, I will agree with them on the purpose of The Congress—the importance of the natural family unit as designed by God for the good of mankind universally.
I am privileged to be able to attend The Congress for a couple of days and to be part of a Family Policy Roundtable, as well as be on a panel on a topic I am extremely interested in—The Family Prosperity Index.
According to the Sutherland Institute which is sponsoring the Roundtable and is home to the Family Prosperity Index, “[t]his index will rank the prosperity of families in the states using a wide range of social, cultural, economic and policy measures. This groundbreaking new project will highlight the connections, as recognized by credible scholarly research, between a healthy economy and strong families.”
I have long maintained that the health of Wisconsin is directly related to the well-being of Wisconsin’s best resource—her natural families. To that end, we have produced our unique publication, Wisconsin’s Cultural Indicators. The most recent edition published in 2014 had a 30 page section on family structure and its impact on certain aspects of Wisconsin’s economic health. It’s a good and helpful work for community leaders, elected officials and others. However, it lacks the scope and the unique and robust data analysis and policy recommendations that will be the hallmarks of The Family Prosperity Index. I believe this Index will enable us at Wisconsin Family Council to even more powerfully make our case that as the family, so the state. I am honored to promote it and to work with the key people developing this significant tool that shows how the so-called “social issues” are the underpinning of and dramatically impact the fiscal aspects of our state.
Actually, that idea right there is a major theme of the entire World of Congress of Families this week. I’m looking forward to being with people from all over the world who share my passion for strengthening, preserving and promoting God’s plan for marriage and family.
This is Julaine Appling for Wisconsin Family Council reminding you the prophet Hosea said, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”